Online Printing Education Opportunities in December 2020 and January 2021

Online opportunities to learn about evolving print business practices and technologies continue through January, 2021.

Event organizers at ISA, drupa, and PRINTING United Alliance have scheduled new events. Plus, you can watch replays of all of the presentations at the FuturePrint Virtual Summit until December 20 and all of the PRINTING United DIgital Experience sessions through January 31. Scroll down to see New Events and On-Demand Replays.

New Events

ISA’s The Link: Soft Signage
December 8-9, 2020
Organized by the International Sign Association

Learn how digitally printing fabric signs and displays (“soft signage”) can help grow your graphics, sign, or visual communications business. Expert will cover the ins and outs of the soft signage market and explore ways you can increase profit by entering this space.

Printers, fabricators, suppliers and distributors will share insights, tips and resources related to fabric selection, equipment required to make soft signage, installation methods, and best practices. See live demonstrations in the exhibitor showcases and enjoy networking opportunities with other participants. There is no fee to register. Visit: https://www.signs.org/softsignage

Digital Textile Printing 2020 conference logo

Digital Textile Printing Conference
December 9-10, 2020
Organized by the PRINTING United Alliance
and American Association of Textile Chemists and Colorists (AATCC)

Key trends and technologies in digitally printed textiles. Morning and afternoon sessions highlight the latest on automation, color management, sustainability, state of the industry, supply chain, and more

Ray Weiss, director, Digital Print Programs, PRINTING United Alliance, and Kerry King, senior VP R&D, Spoonflower, will host the event.

Speakers include:

  • Andy Arkin, strategic account manager, Industrial Segments, Zünd America
  • Andy Paparozzi, chief economist, PRINTING United Alliance
  • Chad Bolick, business development, Unifi Manufacturing Inc.
  • Dan Gillespie, director of Technical Services, Alder Technology
  • David Clark, business development manager, Inks, Huntsman Textile Effects
  • Frank Henderson, President, Henderson Sewing Co.
  • Jaime Herand, VP, Graphics Operations, Orbus Exhibit and Display Group
  • Kimmy Schenter, global color operations, Design, Nike
  • Lewis Shuler, senior R&D manager, Fabric/Color/Print, Old Navy
  • Luke Harris, VP of Manufacturing, Solid Stone Fabrics
  • Ray Weiss, director, Digital Print Programs, PRINTING United Alliance
  • Raylene Marasco, founder, DYE-NAMIX
  • Ron Ciccone, director of Digital Services, Roysons Corp.
  • Will Duncan, CEO, WDA, and executive director, SEAMS Association

“While we cannot meet together in person this year, we are looking forward to bringing this exemplary program to the homes and offices of all involved in digital textile printing,” said Weiss. “Our speaker lineup is second to none. We look forward to offering attendees actionable and usable programming and content in the current business climate.”

For the complete agenda and to register for the event, visit sgia.org/events/digital-textile-printing-conference.

Drupa Previews
December 18, 2020
Organized by Messe Dusseldorf

On October 27, drupa opened an online conference area, exhibition space, and networking plaza where you can learn more about the topics and products that will be presented at the hybrid (virtual/live event) drupa trade fair scheduled for April 20-28 in Dusseldorf, Germany.

Each month’s preview day features live web sessions during which you can chat with the scheduled. The next live preview day will take place December 18, 2020. Registered visitors can view replays of the sessions from the first two preview days held October 27 and November 17.

Presentations currently available include:

  • The inkjet revolution in digital production
  • Inspection systems in flexible packaging
  • Trends in retail and packaging
  • Print in a digital world: through intelligent linkage to return on investment
  • Additive production technologies and options for smart packaging
  • The value of print in multi-channel publishing

In the “Exhibition Space” you can preview some of the products and innovations that will be featured in the live drupa exhibition areas. Meetings with company representatives can be scheduled through the “Networking Plaza”. These networking options allow companies and interested parties to establish live online contact in advance of the live event in April 2021.

“Even in times of crisis we can offer solutions to keep the industries interacting and networking,” explained Erhard Wienkamp, COO, Messe Dusseldorf. “We are working intensively on strengthening global communications not only through our local events, but also be expanding new virtual formats.”

“From now on, it is our goal to create a hybrid concept,” said Sabine Galdermann, Project Director of Print Technologies for drupa. She says they would like to achieve the best of both a digital event and a live event.

On-Demand Replays of October Events

FuturePrint Virtual Summit Logo

FuturePrint Virtual Summit
Organized by FM Future

Replays of the 79 talks presented during the second FuturePrint Virtual Summit (October 12-15) are available through December 20, 2020 on the event website: .https://virtualsummit.futureprint.tech/

Access is free, but registration is required.

Sessions covered trends and technologies in industrial print, wide format print, packaging and labels, and commercial print. A full day of sessions was devoted to “Young Guns in Print.” This day of programming featured sessions led by young printpreneurs and was devoted to the 57% of FuturePrint Virtual Summit attendees who were between the ages of 18 and 35.

According to event organizations, the two most popular sessions attracted more than 700 attendees each. These sessions were:

Xaar: The New Roadmap for Inkjet
Speaker: John Mills, CEO, Xaar

Nanography: Where Print Meets the Future Today
Speaker: Nick Clements, Strategic Business Planner, Landa Digital Printing

Other sessions discussed

  • The Rise, Fall, and Restructuring of the Print Economy in 2020
  • The Essential Sales Channel in 2020: How to Win New Clients on LinkedIn
  • Software: The Key to Successful Adaptation
  • Direct to Object: Introducing Actega Decorating
  • COVID and the Silver Lining for Production Print
  • Global Design and Digital Wallcoverings
  • The Mystery of Pricing
  • The Future of Flexible Packaging
  • Why Digital Print for Corrugated Packaging

The October, 2020 version of the FuturePrint Virtual Summit was attended by 3,908 people from over 80 countries. This is up from the 1,550 people from 65 countries who attended the inaugural FuturePrint Summit in June, 2020.


PRINTING United Digital Experience
Presented by PRINTING United Alliance and NAPCO Media

All programming from the PRINTING United Digital Experience (Oct. 26-Nov. 12) is now available on-demand through January 31, 2021. It is completely free to those who register. Visit: digital.printingunited.com.

Choose to watch more than 100 educational sessions and over 40 product launches and demonstrations. Many sessions address market trends for 2021 and present ideas for growing your business in the post-COVID economy.

Market segments across the industry were represented, including: graphics and wide-format; apparel; commercial; packaging; in-plant; mailing and fulfillment; workflow and software; industrial; and digital textile. 

Sessions include:

  • Panel Discussion: Making Capital Investments in the Shadow of COVID-19
  • Panel Discussion: Driving Profitability and Efficiency in Apparel Decorating
  • Keynote: Opportunities Enabled by Post COVID by Production Inkjet Printing
  • Keynote: Trends and Opportunities in Labels and Flexible Packaging
  • Panel Discussion: The Science and Skill of Graphics Installation
  • Panel Discussion: In-Plant Trends in the Midst of the Pandemic
  • Keynote: Thrive in a Transformative Marketplace with the Latest Sheetfed Offset Technology
  • Keynote: Trends and Opportunities in Folding Cartons and Corrugated
  • Panel Discussion: Emerging Direct Mail Trends for COVID-19 and Beyond
  • Panel Discussion: Effective Selling through Online Portals
  • Panel Discussion: The Rise of E-Commerce in Apparel Printing
  • Keynote: Electrophotography- Digital Print of the Past and Future
  • Keynote: Industrial Print -What’s Hot and Where is it Headed?
  • Panel Discussion: Textiles and Color Assurance

More than 8,200 registrants from 5,700 companies in 108 countries engaged with the PRINTING United Digital Experience platform during the 14 business days of programming. Registrants watched more than 7,500 hours of video and accounted for more than 100,000 pageviews.

Daily Guides developed by NAPCO editorial teams provide attendees a deep-dive into each
market segment day’s schedule and are accessible at https://digital.printingunited.com/virtual-public-bin/

In addition to the schedule of educational sessions and research that is available
on-demand to attendees, the Guides contain an overview and editorial featuring a closer look
at companies championing the technology within each market.

“We are incredibly thankful to those who participated both as exhibitors and attendees to this powerful platform,” said Mark J. Subers, president of PRINTING United. “We encourage those searching for the latest statistics and trends, and for those considering new technology implementation, to bookmark this site and take advantage of the invaluable content. Stay tuned for even more resources and programming to come!”

Multiple Print Industry Online Events Scheduled in October and November

Organizations that typically host live print industry conferences and trade shows in the spring and fall pivoted to a slew of online events in the fall of 2020. Below are some of the print industry online events planned in October and November to help printing, graphics, and visual communications professionals make new connections, learn about new products, and gear up for a better 2021.

Scroll down to learn about events planned by the following organizations:

  • FM Future
  • APTech
  • Smithers
  • PRINTING UNTIED Alliance
  • International Sign Association

FuturePrint Virtual Summit
October 12-16, 2020

Hosted by FM Future

Week-long event includes 120 speakers from 15 countries delivering more than 70 sessions. Each day will feature education and networking in a specific categegory:

October 12: Young Guns in Print
October 13: Industrial Print
October 14: Wide Format Print
October 15: Packaging and Labels
October 16: Commercial Print

John Mills, CEO of Xaar, will outline how Xaar’s new bulk printhead will enable equipment manufacturers to push the boundaries of what’s possible with powerful, reliable, and efficient inkjet technology.

Global retail innovation expert Steve Lister will provide up-to-the-minute insights of what is happening in retail and how it could affect companies that produce retail-related print.

Georgia Parker, Innovation Manager of Fashion for Good, will talk about how digital is accelerating sustainable innovation in the fashion industry,

Nick Landa of Landa Digital Printing will take you on a tour of a Nanographic printing press and explain why its different than any other print process.

Young print entrepreneurs and other young print-industry professionals will help business owners learn how to make print-related careers a more attractive and deliberate choice for the next generation.

Other sessions will provide

  • updates on ink developments
  • a 2040 forecast for the packaging industry,
  • high-speed inkjet printing
  • the mysteries of pricing
  • multi-material inkjet 3D printing
  • new opportunities with 3D sublimation printing

Leading PRINT Summit
October 13, 2020

Hosted by Association for PRINT Technologies (APTech)
Fee: Free for members, $79 for non-members

Four-hour program (11 am to 3 pm ET) on post-COVID-shutdown business operations focuses on four key areas impacted by 2020 disruptive events: Culture, Operations, Sales, Business Development, and Customer Dynamics.

In a headline session on Print 5.0, print-industry expert and author Frank Romano will discuss how printing is evolving in 2020 and beyond. APTech’s Ken Garner will discuss the quest for the elusive, sustainable competitive advantage. Consultant Leslie Groene will talk about sales management for the new reality.

Other speakers will discuss how to

  • recalibrate your business to thrive in challenging times
  • navigate customer dynamics to develop a competitive position
  • prepare for our next-generation industry leaders, and
  • nurture and convert leads to sales.


Digital Print for Packaging US
October 12-14, 2020

Hosted by Smithers
Fee: $399

Online event for brand owners, converters, printing equipment suppliers, and packaging designers. Content will focus on the market need for digital print from the brand’s perspective.

Stephen Kaufman, Chief Product Officer for Esko, will discuss how workflows and color management can solve real problems.
Rob Day, CEO of Tonejet, will discuss Tonejet’s first end-to-end beverage can printing system that went live at the end of 2019.
Alexis Tonneau, Project Manager of Kurz, will discuss how to combine attractive package design and sustainability.

Other sessions will cover topics such as:

  • the efficient production of digital preprint for corrugated packaging
  • special requirements for pigments used for package printing
  • designs for canabis packaging
  • emerging technologies such as NFC, ioT, and AR cam will enable greater efficiencies in strategic packaging management
  • leveraging digital print to create one-of-a-kind customer experiences
  • how artificial intelligence can automate design for digital print projects

Case studies look at some of the pros and cons of integrating digital printing capabilities into an analog flexographic printing line and digitl designs for folding cartons printed on high-speed inkjet presses.

In addition to attending live and recorded presentations, you can join live Q&A sessions and/or facilitated virtual networking rooms.

Digital Textile Printing US
October 15-16, 2020

Hosted by Smithers
Fee: $399

High-level insights from textile printers, end users, fashion designers, retail brands, and equipment manufacturers, suppliers, and technology providers. Live and recorded sessions will focus on how business models, technology , and collaboration can accelerate the commercial adoption of digital print for textiles.

Speakers include: Gart Davis, CEO & Co-founder of Spoonflower; Luca Zaconi, Director of Raw Materials Print, Lululemon Athletica; Jena Nesbitt, Product Strategy Director, Pine Crest Fabrics; Reid Lutter, CEO and Founder, PodiumWear Custom Sports Apparel; Francesca Rosella, Chief Creative Director and Co-Founder, CuteCircuit; and Jessica Schreiber, Founder & CEO at FABSCRAP; Scott Aitken, Managing Director, SPGPrints.

Sessions will cover topics such as:

  • how color and the chemical evolutions are affecting new-century printers
  • how digital textile printing is pushing the boundaries of conventional textile printing
  • using digital print and high-end fabrics for team uniforms
  • innovation to fast track the textile industry to a circular future
  • pretreatment and pigment inkjet ink for textile printing
  • sustainability through innovative textile printing solutions
  • the role of testing in evaluating print textiles
  • color and pattern trends for fashion and apparel
  • color lifecycle management in printed textiles

Attend live Q&A sessions and/or facilitated virtual networking rooms.

PRINTING UNITED Digital Experience
October 26-Nov. 12, 2020

Hosted by PRINTING United Alliance and NAPCO Media.

During 14 business days of no-fee programming, print business owners, operations managers, and employees can choose from 100 educational sessions and 40 product launches. Each day will feature a different focus for educational programming and product demonstrations from exhibitors:

October 26: Graphics/Wide-Format – Hardware and Consumables
October 27: Apparel – Screen Printing/Decorating
October 28: Commercial Printing – Digital Inkjet
October 29: Packaging – Labels and Flexible Packaging
October 30: Graphics/Wide-Format – Finishing and Workflow
November 2: In-Plant Forum
November 3: Commercial – Offset Printing
November 4: Packaging – Folding Carton and Corrugated
November 5: Mailing and Fulfillment
November 6: Workflow and Software – All segments
November 9: Apparel – Direct-to-Garment/Direct-to-Substate
November 10: Commercial Printing – Digital Dry and Liquid Toner
November 11: Industrial
November 12: Digital Textile

Some of the topics the program will cover include:

  • Building a manufacturing mindset for wide-format graphics
  • Opportunities post-COVID in production inkjet printing
  • Wide-format growth markets for 2020 and beyond
  • Thrive in a transformative marketplace with the sheetfed offset technology
  • Trends and opportunities in folding carton and corrugated packaging
  • Workflow and automation: from date night to marriage
  • Dazzling prints with digital embellishments
  • How to research new markets
  • Developing your sales team
  • Direct-to-consumer marketing leadership
  • Emerging direct mail trends for COVID 19 and beyond
  • Establishing today’s successful screen printing business
  • The rise of e-commerce in apparel printing
  • Driving profitability and efficiency in apparel decoration
  • Essential strategies for equipment purchases
  • Facing new competition in core markets
  • How a focus on finishing can help you finish first
  • How commercial offset printers are shrinking turn times to meet short-run demands
  • How high-speed digital production inkjet printing is redefining commercial printing
  • The digital future for labels and flexible packaging
  • By the numbers: KPIs. metrics, and ratios
  • Migrating into industrial printing
  • Modern strategies for stand-out package design
  • Industrial printing: What’s hot and where is it headed
  • In-plant printing trends in the midst of the pandemic
  • Production inkjet printing in the In-plant shop
  • The science and skill of graphics installation
  • Paperboard packaging: differentiation through digital
  • Effective selling through online portals
  • Managing client color expectations
  • How sustainability is driving the next generation of fashion
  • Finding success with digital toner vs. inkjet printing processes
  • Electrophotography-digital print of the past and future
  • Beyond wallpaper: industrial printing for home decor
  • How to build a digital textile business
  • Textiles and color assurance
  • The future of signs and graphics

To see the the full program and register, visit: https://digital.printingunited.com/

The Wrap Experience Digital
November 11-12, 2020

Hosted by the International Sign Association and the Wrap Institute

Networking, education, exhibits, and demonstrations will help wrap installers explore ways to expand into new products and use cutting-edge technologies.

Sessions will focus on design, visualization tools, and upsells such as architectural items, ceramic coatings, vehicle paint protection films (PPF), and more. In the after-hours Speakeasy Area, attendees can connect with some of the wrap industry’s top influencers and shop owners.

Dan Antonelli, of the KickCharge Creative small-business marketing agency, will discuss vehicle wrap design and related brand identity design topics.

The Wrap Institute, co-founded by installer/instructor Justin Pate, is regarded as the world’s top online wrap training program. For the past two years, the Institute brought hands-on instruction to ISA in-person events. In 2020, The Wrap Experience Digital will be part of ISA’s The Link series of virtual events to help sign, graphics and visual communications companies sustain and grow their businesses.